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Recently there have been several articles posted about outdated and/or less than effective or ineffective (quick fix and cheap) SEO and Social Media plans being marketed to unaware and uniformed clients.
First of all if you are not familiar with a product or a service you should be seeking information and advice from various knowledgeable sources in order to make the right decision for you and your business. If you don’t as in anything you open yourself up to subpar or ineffective results.
Digital Marketing is an ecosystem where the seamless integration of a systems components is essential for its functioning - a central point where all the elements converge.Today You must approach it holistically.
The complexities and constantly changing landscape of digital marketing takes the right tools, years of experience and constant study to be able to properly navigate and effectively implement a truly effective marketing initiative.
To give you an idea of this complexity, I have brought up a few points here to convince you of the intricacies of Digital Marketing and its constant evolution.
Creating A Plan That Works
Its location culture, ideals and its people make every business unique. Every marketing strategy, therefore, must also be unique and to do that you must understand your company and your local market.
You must have a strategy to generate interest for a specific product or idea. It’s an assessment of each individual company, and a constant work in progress in determining which forms of social media will work best for you.
1.Do you have a plan?
Did you know that now, thanks to Google’s Panda update bad web design and poor navigation will get you poor search rankings. Google decided to start watching people’s habits in an effort to produce better search rankings.
So with that thought in mind Google rewards sites that have good navigation and design with higher organic search rankings because they stay longer and navigate deeper.
Compare that to a poorly designed web site that people simply land on the site and leave within seconds because of its look – Google in particular, but the others as well, will now penalize poor design by lowering its ranking on the organic search lists.
2. Is your website up to date technologically with website design that is easy to navigate?
3. Did you know that Organic SEO is more effective and will produce better results over the long term than Paid search?
Did you know that it is becoming apparent that with the new algorithms used today, link building is something that can land you in trouble with search engines and possibly penalized you with lower page rankings and possibly being removed from other search engine listings .
On the other hand there are also articles out there advising businesses on how to increase their in links in order to improve their search rankings in Google, Bing, and Yahoo.
4. Do you want to take this chance?
If you want to improve your search engine rankings and attract new customers you might do better by creating good content to attract people with content that will engage them. This engagement will create the type of indirect links that the search engines are looking for today through comments and sharing-social interaction.
It can’t be all about you anymore it also needs to be about what is important to them-How they feel about something and what is going to draw their interest. It is about bringing them to you not just you going to them.
And don’t confuse the word social as just sites like Facebook, Twitter and Google Plus –to name a few - Because these are just a part of SEO as a whole as you will see.
A report released by Experian Marketing Services in mid January 2013 summarizing web trends of 2012 revealed that search engines are a key factor in web traffic sources. Search won the web traffic race with a staggering 49% of traffic to web sites compared to 3.8% from Facebook and 1% from YouTube.
5. How many of you know this term? And are they up to date?
Citations are defined as references to your business name and address on other web pages, even if there is no link to your website.
Citations are a key component of the ranking algorithms of the major search engines. Businesses with a greater number of citations will probably rank higher than businesses with fewer citations.
Web Site Optimization
Today this could be defined as a seamless integration of system components which is essential to be able to function properly - a central point where all the elements converge. The coordination required to synchronize all the functions of a web site can be overwhelming.
6. Are you overwhelmed yet?
Web Page Optimization
“The web page is the most important social media development of all time. This is a weighty statement... but it’s also a true one.” Says Steven Aresenault, CEO of One Big Broadcast.
“No other form of content sharing has had such a dramatic--and long-lasting--impact on companies. These pages serve to inform and attract. They are the first impressions and the final thoughts. And using Search Engine Optimization (SEO) will reinforce what they do. Web page SEO is meant to increase a brand’s visibility.”
6. Do you know this?
Social Media Integration
The world of Digital Marketing has changed. Consumers are flocking to the Internet seeking information about their favorite brands and products. They want the immediacy of networking; they want the ease of web site posts; they want instant communication. And they’re willing to give their loyalties (as well as their dollars) to companies that offer these things through social integration.
Social integration is the process of linking media forms to the Internet. It’s meant to increase a brand’s reputation, as well as subtly promote specific products or events.
It’s also connected to the way individuals shop.
Consumers are now spending their time--and their money--online. They’re seeking out company web sites, utilizing social media as a way to learn and buy. It’s estimated that:
71% of users rely on online information for all of their purchasing.
79% of users seek out company social accounts (like Facebook or Twitter, etc.) to receive updates and incentives.
81% of active social media users favor companies and products found in their networks.
70% of active social media users do the majority of their shopping online.
The statistics are startling--if only because they can no longer be ignored.
Social integration is linked to consumer awareness. Companies that embrace networking, blogging and more become part of an ever-expanding circle of accounts. They are connected directly to the demographics they need, bringing traffic to their sites.
A business that isn’t integrated is a business that’s losing money.
7.Were you aware of this?
SEO and Social Automation Platforms
there are also SEO and Social automation platforms available that can save valuable time which translates into valuable resources. But the key to how they function is in their design and the team behind it who will be consulting on a consistent basis on changes and new developments and strategies that will keep you at peak performance.
8. Do you know about SEO and Social Automation Platforms and how they function?
9. Did do you know they existed?
Measure, measure, measure. Analytics are an essential component required to measure the effectiveness of you marketing. You must be able to gauge where your marketing is being the most effective and adjust accordingly.
Your marketing company should be consulting you on a regular basis to help you understand the information contained in the analytics that they provided and work with you on adjusting to increase you marketing’s effectiveness.
One article I read this past week that made a good point that a company that does not offer analytics is a company be should avoided-. Good advice. And another pointed out that if they don’t want to do an audit of your current marketing platform before they start making suggestions or giving you prices-Walk away-More good advice.
10. Do you have SEO and Social Analytics?
There were 10 questions throughout this article. Did you answer them? How did you answer them? Where you familiar with them? Or maybe you had just heard about or read a little about them.
If you are unsure or unaware of any of the questions posed throughout this article it may be time to have a SEO and Social Integration specialist audit your marketing initiatives effectiveness.
If you are a Dealer Principal or General Manager you must understand the enormous impact of all this is too great not to have some knowledge so you can at least ask the right questions and stay informed on a continual basis. This is not something that you just sign up for and forget-it is a process that must constantly be monitored and adjusted to maintain or improve its effectiveness.
To give you an idea of the impact of an ongoing, properly structured and executed plan- I can tell you that I am personally aware of a dealer client who holds the top spot in many high traffic search terms and has increased web traffic and visitors by 400% and sales by 25% by having the properly integrated platform in place supported by knowledgeable professionals.
11. Did that spark your interest?
And as I stated at the beginning of this article these are only some of the components that are involved in structuring an effective Digital Marketing campaign. Content and strategies must be constantly changing and adjusted to keep up with new Technologies, Social Trends and Changes in search engines sophisticated algorithms.
This post is only to make you aware of the complexity of the rapidly changing Digital World of marketing with the hope that you will delve deeper and get specialized competent advice- and one more question- 12. Will you be rewarded for your efforts? I’ll answer this one-Yes.
Written by Bill Cosgrove